August 04, 2011 06:20:16 GMT
After the ex-wife of Paul McCartney claimed a journalist from the Mirror Group hacked into her phone messages in 2001, the CNN host points out that she has a history of 'somewhat extravagant claims.'
Piers Morgan is speaking out against the phone hacking accusations directed at Mirror Group Newspapers by Heather Mills. In a lengthy statement released on Wednesday, August 3, the host of CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight" attacked the credibility of Paul McCartney's ex-wife.
"Heather Mills has made unsubstantiated claims about a conversation she may or may not have had with a senior executive from a Trinity Mirror newspaper in 2001," the 46-year-old began his statement. "The BBC has confirmed to me that this executive was not employed by the Daily Mirror."
"I have no knowledge of any conversation any executive from other newspapers at Trinity Mirror may or may not have had with Heather Mills. What I can say and have knowledge of is that Sir Paul McCartney asserted that Heather Mills illegally intercepted his telephones, and leaked confidential material to the media. This is well documented, and was stated in their divorce case."
In the end, he stated, "No doubt everyone will take this and other instances of somewhat extravagant claims by Ms Mills into account in assessing what credibility and platform her assertions are given. And to reiterate, I have never hacked a phone, told anyone to hack a phone, nor to my knowledge published any story obtained from the hacking of a phone."
Heather previously told BBC's Newsnight that a senior reporter from one of the Trinity Mirror newspapers has confessed to hacking into her phone messages in 2001. She recalled, "He said, 'Oh, I heard you had a big argument with your boyfriend,' and he quoted verbatim the messages from my machine."
"I said, 'You've obviously hacked my phone. If you do anything with story - because they were obviously very private conversations about issues we were having as a couple - then I'll go to the police.' And he said 'OK, OK, yeah we did hear it on your voice messages. I won't run it'," the 43-year-old continued. She, however, did not identify the reporter in question.
While she made it clear it wasn't Piers, Heather said the former editor of The Daily Mirror did listen to the tape. "At one stage I was played a tape of a message Paul had left Heather on her mobile phone," he wrote in his 2007 column. "It was heartbreaking. He sounded lonely, miserable and desperate and even sang 'We Can Work It Out' into the answer phone."